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Meet the Columnist

Columnist, Sheila Moss, is humor writer from  Tennessee. She writes  a weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny things that happen to everyone.

   She has written for  the Daily News of Kingsport,   Griffin Journal, Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books.  Her articles have appeared in numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.

    She is a former board member and past  Editor of  the Columnists.com, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for columnists. She is the Web Editor of Southern
Humorists.com
  and  a founder of the Southern Humorists writers' organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com

    To carry her weekly column in your newspaper, or to republish an article, please contact her. It's that easy. 

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Goodbye Stress....
 


Goodbye Stress


The other morning as I came to work, I notice a table of pamphlets from the Health Department in the lobby of the building. I began browsing through them; it gave me something to do while waiting for the elevator. One of them was about stress. Now everybody could use one of those, I figured. So I took one and while I waited, I read. By the time I got to my floor, I was converted and convinced. Yes, I知 gonna get the stress outta my life. I知 gonna be a new woman in 12 easy steps:

I知 gonna take care of me. Before I can take care of anyone else, I have to be okay myself, per the pamphlet. Yes, it is easy to be caught up in doing for others and forget about myself. So, I知 gonna buy myself that red dress. I知 gonna go the doctor just for a checkup, and then I知 gonna have my hair done.

I知 gonna wash my hands of other people and quit trying to fix them. If my daughters want to smoke let them. My gosh, they are both RN痴. They know better, but don稚 do better. I知 gonna quit trying to make people change and be different, like the pamphlet suggested. I知 going to quit dropping hints and making helpful suggestions. I知 gonna let them deal with their own problems and my life is going to get a whole lot simpler.

I知 gonna do things that make me happy. Why do we get away from doing the things we enjoy and that give us pleasure in life? I quit painting a long time ago. I don稚 know why it just seemed like there wasn稚 enough time. But it gave me pleasure to create. I知 going to take a giant step BACKWARDS and see how it feels.

I知 gonna to continue to avoid too much "self medication." Alcohol might make my problems seem better for a while. However, it does nothing to get rid of whatever is causing stress.

I知 gonna cut myself some slack. My grandchildren are growing up; I need to take some time for them now. Does anybody care if the closets are cleaned except me? I知 going to be more flexible. I知 going to take time to enjoy a sunset, play with my pet, call a friend, and see a movie. I知 gonna quit demanding more from myself that I would from others. And the car doesn稚 care if it ever gets washed.

I知 going to accept that I can稚 always be in control. Some things are like the weather; we just have to live with them. It doesn稚 really matter whether I always have things MY way. Let someone else have it his or her way. What does it matter? In fact, let it be nobody痴 way - but just the way it is.

I知 gonna plan ahead for stress. If know that it is evaluation time at work or bill paying time, or that the in-laws are coming to visit, I知 going to allow some time to unwind after it is over. I知 gonna do like the income tax accountants who give themselves a mini vacation for making it through April 15th.

I知 gonna set realistic goals. It is good to have goals, but goals that I can稚 reach cause stress. I知 going to set small goals, something I can manage with driving myself nuts. Instead of emptying my "in basket" at work, I知 leaving a few things till tomorrow. Instead of trying to spring clean the whole house, I知 gonna clean out one drawer or one closet per day. I feel better already.

I知 going to take more breaks. My body needs rest. I知 going to take time for "fudgesicle breaks." When I achieve something, I知 gonna reward myself. When I went to school, I studied for a test and after a certain amount was learned, I stopped and ate a fudgesicle to reward myself. Life needs more of these fudgesicle breaks.

I知 going to quit feeling sorry for myself when nobody appreciates me. I知 going to learn to give praise. When nobody gives me a compliment, I知 going to praise others and compliment their achievements. I知 gonna get a big glass bottle and a bag of marbles. Every time I accomplish something or achieve a goal, I知 gonna put a marble in the bottle. Then when I feel unappreciated, I知 gonna look at the bottle and see my accomplishments.

I知 going quit being critical of myself. I知 gonna do the best I can and not try to be a super human. I知 going to quit worrying about what I "should" do. I致e spent most of my doing what I "should" do. Now it痴 time to do what I "wanna" do. Besides, even superheroes have their critics.

I知 going to keep my sense of humor. I知 going to laugh at myself and my own human weaknesses. Laughing makes me feel better, like exercise. If I can稚 do anything about a situation, I知 going to make a joke about it and go on. I知 going to make humor a part of myself and of my attitude toward life. And if I can do this well enough, maybe I won稚 even need the other eleven. 


Copyright 2000 Sheila Moss
 
 



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